KitchenTigress: Japanese Soufflé Cheesecake

Japanese Soufflé Cheesecake

Soufflé cheesecake is the Japanese take on cheesecake. It's much lighter than the American or German version and not at all cheesy – the ideal cheesecake for cheesecake haters. The recipe I'm sharing is adapted from Diana's Desserts. I've made four changes to the original recipe:

🌹 The amount of cream cheese is reduced by about 30% to make the cake really light.

🌹 The oven is preheated to 180°C, then reduced to 170°C when the baking starts. The original recipe uses 160°C instead.

Despite the higher temperature and lesser cream cheese, my baking time is about the same as Diana's.

🌹 The cake is baked in the bottom instead of the middle of the oven so that the top doesn't brown too quickly.

🌹 The egg whites are whisked without cream of tartar. I find the cake too sour with the original recipe's ¼ tsp, and the acid isn't necessary for stopping the cake from collapsing.

Besides the above changes, I've added a couple of steps to make the cake as smooth as possible. I sieve the cream cheese mixture. And I remove big air bubbles in the batter by banging the mixing bowl hard, and by pouring slowly when the batter is transferred into the cake pan.
A good soufflé cheesecake should have lots of tiny holes inside, like a chiffon cake, to make it light. Big holes would be unsightly. No holes at all would mean the cake is heavy and dense like a regular cheesecake

How to make Japanese Soufflé Cheesecake

Step-by-step guide

This recipe makes a light, non-cheesy cheesecake. The cake is baked in a water bath. A long, slow bake prevents the crust from cracking.

japanese soufflé cheesecake
(For one 18cm cake)

  • 80 ml milk
  • 40 g butter at room temperature – cut into small pieces
  • 140 g full-fat block cream cheese at room temperature – cut into small pieces
  • 50 g cake flour
  • 15 g cornstarch
  • ⅛ tsp salt – sift with cake flour and cornstarch
  • 75 g egg yolks
  • 2 tsp lemon juice
  • 180 g egg whites
  • 90 g caster sugar

  1. Measure and prep ingredients as detailed above.

  2. Preheat oven to 180°C (355°F). Put kettle on. Line 18 x 6 cm round cake pan, with parchment paper extending above top of pan by 2-3 cm.

  3. Heat milk till hand-hot. Add to butter and cream cheese. Mix evenly. Add egg yolks and lemon juice. Mix evenly. Sieve twice. Add sifted cake flour, cornstarch and salt. Mix till just even.
  4. Whisk egg whites till big bubbles become small. Continue whisking whilst adding sugar gradually. Keep on whisking till egg whites form soft peaks.

  5. Add egg whites to yolk mixture in 3 batches. Mix till half even after first 2 additions, then till just fully even after third addition. Bang mixing bowl against worktop 3-4 times, hard, to remove big air bubbles.
  6. Pour batter into cake pan, slowly so that big air bubbles burst as batter flows out of mixing bowl.

  7. Reboil water in kettle. Put cake pan in a bigger pan. Fill outer pan with boiling water to about half-way up sides of inner cake pan. Reduce oven temperature to 170°C (340°F). Bake in bottom of oven till top of cake is golden brown and inserted skewer comes out with some crumbs attached, about 1¼ hours.
  8. Remove cake from oven. Leave on wire rack to cool down completely. Unmould by inverting onto a plate. Discard parchment paper. Invert onto another plate so that cake is right way up.

  9. Cut cake with serrated knife by moving blade either forward or backward, i.e. do not saw. Leftovers should be chilled, covered.